Millerton: From Clocktower to Rail Trail
In recent months, the Somervillain has been spending a lot of time in the rural hamlet of Millerton, NY, moreso than in her adopted Somerville, it has sometimes seemed. So let's take a little tour, shall we? It is a bundle of contradictions, for such a small town.
Here is the cute main street, notable for its clocktower building. The vehicles that cruise it are pretty evenly split between local pickup trucks and out-of-town city-person BMWs.
Dutchess County is horse country, and horsey types shop at the Salem Saddlery ...
... but Dutchess County is also near the Berkshires, land of James Taylor and Deadheads, so for the hippie types, we have Healthy Being.
Those who need workboots and flannel shirts go to Saperstein's ...
... and those who need a $70 chocolate torte go to Millerton Market. "Great food," indeed. Let them eat cake!
There is a lot of high and low in Millerton, and not a lot in between. As the volunteer lady at one of Somervillain & Co.'s favorite shops, Thriftique, told me, "I have to drive 40 minutes just to get a spool of thread!" (Thriftique currently sports a lovely window display for St. Patrick's Day, by the way. See all that green?)
The Harlem Valley Rail Trail: a 15-mile paved bicycle trail that cuts right through the heart of Millerton. This, as I understand it, is part of what drew all the Weekend People up here in the first place.
Here, for example, is Oblong Books & Music, which I once saw featured as the setting in a New Yorker cartoon. You know a place has become part of the Manhattanite's universe when it shows up in a New Yorker cartoon.
Irving Farm coffee house is an actual spin-off of a Manhattan cafe - the original is located on Irving Place near Gramercy Park. But it doesn't matter that it looks like the ultimate weekender hang-out - everyone in Millerton goes to Irving Farm. Coffee, the great equalizer.
But if coffee is not your cup of tea, try local tea-maker Harney & Sons:
Or pick up your papers, tackle, ammo, and Pendletons at Terni's (a.k.a. "Phil's," for those in the know):
Don't eat at "Coach Ali's" Diner unless you like your food stuck on your silverware. Sorry, Coach Ali, we want to love you but them's the facts!
And finally, Somervillain's favorite spot in Millerton, the Millerton Moviehouse.
It may have a crummy sound system and uncomfortable seats, but it offers a surprisingly good selection for a place that only shows three movies at a time, a nice mix of mainstream and arty, and most important of all, at least it is there!
In a town where you can buy a $70 cake and a new shotgun but not a spool of thread, that is saying something.